MUMBAI: Italian film producer Aurelio De Laurentiis
has announced an ambitious $100 million expansion plan
for his Filmauro production house. He has also opined
on a variety of topics including a new strategy for
film distribution, criticism of Italian Prime Minister
Mario Monti's alleged disinterest in film and an end
to Filmauro's highly profitable Christmas film franchise.
expansion plans, involving Universal Pictures International
Italy, were the centerpiece of the gregarious De Laurentiis'
meandering 80-minute monologue at Universal's Rome headquarters,
with Universal Italy president Richard Borg and De Laurentiis'
son, Luigi De Laurentiis also present.
Laurentiis said he would produce at least 20 films in
conjunction with Universal Italy, including some international
titles. Among them: the Steve Jobs biopic Jobs: Get
Inspired and a yet-unnamed project he said would be
based on a Truman Capote story and would star Leonardo
DiCaprio and Ryan Gosling.
Laurentiis, 63, nephew of the late famed producer Dino
De Laurentiis, also predicted that comedic actor Christian
De Sica, the son of iconic Italian director Vittorio
De Sica would try his hand increasingly at directing
in the future.
Italian productions he said are in the works include
Colpi di fulmine (Lightning Strike), the latest comedy
from Neri Parenti, a comedy he said would be called
Mr. Love, another featuring popular comic Carlo Verdone
called Sei personaggi in cerca d'amore (Six Characters
in Search of Love) and three films from young director
Alberto Ferrari, including one that De Laurentiis said
Oscar-winning actor and director Roberto Benigni wanted
but that De Laurentiis snatched away from him.
producer also said that he would make his first foray
into television next year, with a project of six 100-minute
episodes taken from a book by best-selling author Giorgio
also said he soon will travel to Los Angeles to meet
with Universal brass to discuss a still wider agreement
with the company, covering territories other than Italy.